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App Development
7 minutes read

Building a Private Social Media App

By Robert Kazmi
By Robert Kazmi
App Development
7 minutes read

With all of the well-documented issues surrounding popular social media platforms, there has been a growing interest in private social media app development. Popular social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter face endless debate around free-speech, content moderation, and user privacy. A private social networking platform has none of the headaches or debates associated with public social media platforms

This post will explain in more detail what a private social media app is and the benefits of building one. In addition, we will share the top considerations your business needs to think about before creating and launching a private social media app

What Is a Private Social Media App?

If you’re reading this post, you are likely already familiar with public social media platforms like Instagram, Tik Tok, Facebook, and YouTube. A private social media app is similar to popular public social media apps, but control over who is allowed to use the platform is tightly regulated by the controlling organization. In addition, there are typically no third parties involved, such as advertisers and other organizations pushing agendas and selling products. 

On a private social network, users can tightly control their personal information and who they share it with. The hallmark of a good private social network is discretion and privacy. While these private alternatives to Facebook and Twitter might not be as popular, people are drawn to private social networks because they can connect with like-minded people discreetly. In addition, private social networks create an intimate environment for niche interests and communities to flourish. 

The Benefits of Building a Private Social Media App 

Social media platforms have been a great community-building tool, but popular public platforms have become overrun with third-party advertisers, privacy issues, and more. As a result, more people are considering private social networks. Here are the benefits of private social media that your business should consider: 

  • User management 
  • User experience 
  • Engage users 
  • Greater monetization opportunities

User Management 

The most difficult aspect of public social media sites is managing the users interacting with your organization’s community. Unfortunately, many businesses choose to use popular social media platforms in the name of user acquisition. After all, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, to name a few popular platforms, have massive user bases. However, all is not as it appears. Popular social media platforms are rife with spam bots, trolls, and other unsavory users. 

Keeping your community free of these unwanted users can be next to impossible, and the presence of these elements can hamper or discourage target user activity entirely. However, with a private social network, your business can control who uses it and quickly remove any account causing issues. 

User Experience 

When you use a public social media site like Facebook, you rely on the platform to provide the User Experience. Building a private social media app gives your organization total control over the User Experience for its community members. With a private social network, your business doesn’t have to worry about platform or algorithm updates harming its users or limiting the visibility of posts. 

In addition, your organization can curate a positive experience for the users of its private social network by removing hateful posts and banning users that don’t positively contribute to the community. Finally, when your business builds a private social media app, it can fine-tune the experience to match user desires. 

Engage Users 

Building a private social media app allows your organization to connect with target users in a more meaningful way. Once upon a time, public social media sites were heralded as great engagement tools for businesses. While there is still some potential for user engagement, popular social media sites don’t offer the same level of user engagement now that the networks are full of ads, memes, and other spam. 

When your business invests in a private social network, it doesn’t have to worry about competing in an overcrowded space. Instead, private social networks encourage meaningful communication and community engagement. 

Greater Monetization Opportunities 

Private social networks give your organization more opportunities to monetize than public social media sites. Your business can pick and choose places to offer monetized options on a private social network. In addition, since your company will be at the center of focus on a private social network, users are more likely to buy from your business. If you integrate a payment gateway, you can add products and services to the social network and sell directly to community members. 

Building a Private Social Media App: Top Considerations 

Now that you understand what a private social network is and how it can be beneficial to your business, here are some of the main points to consider before you begin development:

  • Organizational goals
  • The purpose of your community 
  • The ideal user 

Organizational Goals 

Before you begin developing a private social media app, it is important to define your organizational goals for doing so. After all, if you don’t know why you want to leave popular social media sites, it is likely not the best idea to spend the time and money developing an alternative. If you are having difficulty defining your business goals for developing a private social network, here are some questions you can ask yourself to prompt thoughtful responses: 

  • What would your business like to accomplish that it can’t on an existing social media site? 
  • What roadblocks do popular social media platforms cause for your company’s audience? 
  • In what ways will your audience be better served by a private social network? 

Developing a private social media app will not be the best choice for every business. Before you begin the app development journey, ensure you understand why this option will serve your organization’s long and short-term goals. 

The Purpose of Your Community 

You should know the purpose of your online community and why developing a private social network is the way to accomplish it best. The purpose of your community should be specific, provide rewarding results, and only be achievable by a community effort. Once you make the decision to move from an existing public social media platform to a private social network, you should have a clear understanding of why it is the right decision. However, your audience members won’t know, and it is important that you adequately explain the transition to them. 

The Ideal User 

It is vital to define your ideal user before developing a private social media app, as you will be making important decisions with them in mind. The ideal user of your private social network will be the person that is most excited to use your platform and gets the most value out of the community. If you already have a strong social media presence and community, it will be easier to define your organization’s ideal user. 

Final Thoughts 

If your organization has been frustrated by public social media platforms, developing a private social network could be the best option for your business. Take your time to research and understand the benefits and challenges of transitioning to a private social network before beginning development. If you need help choosing the right technologies for your private social media app, reach out to an experienced app development partner.

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